Vancouver

Quick Facts:
Province: British Columbia
Population: 2,208,300

Surrounded by mountains and oceans on Canada’s spectacular west coast, Vancouver is consistently ranked as one of the world’s most livable cities and is currently enjoying one of the strongest economic expansions on record. Vancouver’s economy has been transformed in the last quarter-century into a strong service economy that caters to both local and international needs. The economic activity generated by the 2010 Winter Games means that now is the ideal time to establish or expand a business presence in Vancouver.

Key Advantages

  • Emergence of globally competitive companies, making the region home to many unique, technology-based products, from the arm used on space shuttles to Sierra Wireless’s modem to the superconducting quantum computer being developed by D Wave Systems Inc.
  • Highly competitive local industries are home to 81,000 businesses and 40 head offices of Canada's largest 500 corporations with global reputations that include clean technologies and planning for sustainability
  • Other thriving industries include financial, legal, scientific and technical service companies as well as a growing technology sector, with strength in biotechnology, fuel cells, wireless, telecommunications and new media
  • Blessed with one of the world’s best natural deep-water harbours, the shortest distances to Asia of any major North American city, and close proximity to the U.S., Vancouver was destined from its founding to become a key international transportation hub
  • Located in a time zone that allows access to all three centres of world commerce (London, New York, Hong Kong) in a single working day
  • Highly skilled, entrepreneurial and competitive workforce makes it one of the best places to do business
  • Business costs 13.2% below the US average— nearly 18% lower than Seattle and 23% less expensive than San Francisco, according to KPMG (Dec 08)
  • Next door to the world’s largest software design cluster in Seattle and Portland
  • A major North American production centre for film and television, a catalyst for the city's expanding creative industries
  • Ranked in the top 10 cities worldwide for ease of doing business (Master Card’s 2008 Worldwide Centre of Commerce Index)
  • Ranked 4th for tax competitiveness out of 35 major international cities studied (2008 KPMG Competitive Alternatives Report)
  • 2nd lowest taxation on R&D, out of 35 major international cities, providing generous refundable R&D incentives {2008 KPMG Competitive Alternatives Report}
  • One of the top six most entrepreneurial cities in developed countries (2008 Global Entrepreneurship Monitor Data report)
  • Vancouver is home to world-renowned universities and research institutions working at the leading edge of advanced technologies, including fuel cells, nanotech, genomic research, etc

Sector Strengths

  • Digital Entertainment, including Games Development and Animation
  • International Education
  • Film and Television production
  • Financial Services
  • Wireless Devices, Networks, and Applications
  • Green Technology
  • IT Security, Wireless, Health
  • Mining